Removing Moth Ball Smell from a Car

June 13, 2011

The trunk of a car.How do I get a mothball smell out of a car?

By Pam H.



Bronze Feedback Medal for All Time! 101 Feedbacks
June 13, 20110 found this helpful
Best Answer

Try putting an open dish of vanilla in the car (only when you are not driving it of course) or set a couple of pieces of charcoal in a bowl in a couple places. Both absorb odors.

Reply Was this helpful? Yes
June 14, 20110 found this helpful
Best Answer

Try putting a bowl of white vinegar in the car overnight (or maybe several nights). It's great at removing cigarette smoke, might remove moth ball odor. Hope it helps.

Reply Was this helpful? Yes
Answer this Question

3 More Questions

Ask a QuestionHere are the questions asked by community members. Read on to see the answers provided by the ThriftyFun community or ask a new question.

October 22, 2010

How do I get moth ball smell out of my car?

By Kistler8919 from Kutztown, PA


June 8, 20151 found this helpful
Best Answer

I had to put mothballs in a car that had some stuff stored in it. Once we got the car repaired and I removed the items. The smell (of course) lingered on. We used odoban... an odor removing spray.


You can get it at walmart in the cleaning supplies. It eliminated the odor almost instantly. Spray a couple of days a row to keep smell from "creeping" back in... Good luck!

Reply Was this helpful? 1
Answer this Question

October 7, 2019

How do I get the moth ball smell out of my car? I've tried everything that has been suggested almost. Please help me I have to drive my granddaughter in that SUV and for her sake please help me.

It is dangerous for me and my granddaughter, but most importantly my granddaughter.


Bronze Feedback Medal for All Time! 168 Feedbacks
October 7, 20190 found this helpful

I love essential oils and use them in my car. Put several drops of your favorite citrus oil on a felt pad and place under the seats and near the vents. Lemon really deodorizes and it's quite popular in other products on the market.


OR place charcoal in your car and leave set until you no longer experience the odor of mothballs. Also, you could try a carpet freshening powder for eliminating pet odor that has baking soda ingredient.

Reply Was this helpful? Yes

Gold Post Medal for All Time! 677 Posts
October 7, 20190 found this helpful

Try a product called Nok-Out. You can get it on amazon

Reply Was this helpful? Yes

Bronze Post Medal for All Time! 140 Posts
October 7, 20190 found this helpful

Go on- and this product called Smelleze-it's non-toxic and odorless!

Reply Was this helpful? Yes

Bronze Post Medal for All Time! 105 Posts
October 8, 20190 found this helpful

There are a lot of great products to get rid of orders in a car. I would recommend using one of these Meguiar's Whole Car.
Moso Natural, Rocco & Roxie Professional, Ozium Air Sanitizer, Febreze Hawaiian, Biocide Systems Auto Shocker, or Ozium Gel.

Reply Was this helpful? Yes

Gold Feedback Medal for All Time! 949 Feedbacks
October 10, 20190 found this helpful

You do not say where you had the mothballs - were they put there for a reason?

I think you will need to vacuum your entire car - all floors and side panels if you have carpet panels. Be sure to do the trunk also.


You can spray your carpets with an enzyme cleaner (generally used for pet odors and sold at all big stores in the cleaning products isle) and let it dry.

Purchase a cleaner recommended for cleaning your dash and other parts of the car. Auto stores are the best place to find this and you may even ask about a cleaner for your carpets.
You will need to use some sort of odor reducing spray on your AC. Ask about this at the auto store as you may need to spray the intake area of your AC but someone at the auto store can help you with all of this.
They are used to people wanting all kinds of odors removed from their cars/trucks.

I believe you will have to clean every place that can be cleaned and then put a couple of containers of charcoal or cat litter in the car for several nights.


Citrus peels or coffee grounds also help remove odors as well as baking soda, so try anything you have on hand.
Remove containers in the morning and leave in sunshine until time to put them back in your car.

If this is too much for you then you can look for a good auto detailing shop and let them do this for you.

Reply Was this helpful? Yes

Bronze Feedback Medal for All Time! 196 Feedbacks
October 26, 20190 found this helpful

Thrifty Fun (this lovely site you are on) has a whole thread for this very topic:

I can tell you from experience that time is the only way I have been successful at getting rid of that smell. When I was helping clean out an apartment of a deceased relative a few summers ago, I had no clue that she mothballs in the pocket of a coat and it sat in my car for a few days until I could get it to the goodwill. It was awful.


Drove with the windows down for a few weeks before that awful smell finally went away!

Reply Was this helpful? Yes
Answer this Question


ThriftyFun is one of the longest running frugal living communities on the Internet. These are archives of older discussions.

October 22, 2010

I can't get the moth ball smell out of my car! I have pretty much tried everything to take out the smell.

Comment Was this helpful? Yes
Home and Garden Cleaning OdorsJuly 24, 2017
Birthday Ideas!
Valentine's Ideas!
St. Patrick's Ideas!
Ask a Question
Share a Post
Better LivingBudget & FinanceBusiness and LegalComputersConsumer AdviceCoronavirusCraftsEducationEntertainmentFood and RecipesHealth & BeautyHolidays and PartiesHome and GardenMake Your OwnOrganizingParentingPetsPhotosTravel and RecreationWeddings
Published by ThriftyFun.
Desktop Page | View Mobile
Disclaimer | Privacy Policy | Contact Us
Generated 2023-01-20 22:11:09 in 3 secs. ⛅️️
© 1997-2023 by Cumuli, Inc. All Rights Reserved.